Polar Biology

, Volume 30, Issue 8, pp 969–981 | Cite as

Mesozooplankton distribution in northern Svalbard waters in relation to hydrography

  • Malin DaaseEmail author
  • Ketil Eiane
Original Paper


We investigated the distribution of mesozooplankton in waters north of Svalbard (north of 78°50′N) at 38 stations in August and September of 2002, 2003 and 2004. The zooplankton community was numerically dominated by copepods (58–98% of the total abundance). Zooplankton abundance ranged from 115 individuals m−3 at the northern most location to 12,296 individuals m−3 on the shelf. Cluster analysis revealed four different groups with distinct geographic integrity that were identified by variation in species densities rather than by variation in taxonomic composition. Water temperature and salinity differed significantly between the different cluster groups indicating that part of the observed variations in species distribution relate to differences in hydrography. Numerous significant regressions between zooplankton abundance at species level and hydrographical parameters suggest that variability in water masses has measurable effects on zooplankton distribution and species composition in the study area.


Arctic Ocean Zooplankton Community Atlantic Water Cluster Group Zooplankton Abundance 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Thanks to P. Kuklinski for PRIMER support and to D. Aksnes for comments on an earlier manuscript. The help of Captain and crew of R/V Jan Mayen is appreciated as well as the support of fellow cruise participants.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University Centre in SvalbardLongyearbyenNorway

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